Class Field Trip: BIF 2015 – September 16 and September 17

For the 5th consecutive year, Hope Life Skills students had the opportunity to attend an

amazing convocation of inspirational, international story tellers at the Trinity Theatre in Providence at BIF 10.

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The BIF venue at Trinity Theatre: individuals sharing their life stories on the Trinity Theatre stage to inspire and empower hundreds of listeners to extend themselves out of their comfort zone to be the successful person each dreams to be.  Matthew Zachary, the storyteller on stage in this photo, shares his brain surgery story.   You can see a screen in the upper right corner of this photo, on the stage, which was a video showing the intimate details of the actual surgery opening Matthew’s skull to remove a cancerous tumor.  Matthew was awake during the entire operation speaking to the surgeons.

Each storyteller shared a story from his or her life journey, often about doubt and adversity, sometimes failure, but always ‘never give up’ to extend themselves out of their comfort zone toward ultimate success.

One of the amazing things about this event was our ability to meet and speak with the storytellers

during breaks and at lunch” said Gisabel Salcedo.  “I was so excited about meeting singer/songwriter Dani Shay.   We talked about our love of music and the details of songwriting.  And, she was so nice and encouraging.

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From left to right: Gisabel Salcedo, BIF storyteller singer/songwriter Dani Shay and Fernando Perez at the end of their lunch time conversation.

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Look closely. Hope Life Skills alum Jean Rodriguez looking at the camera with the pad resting on his knee while present Life Skills students KiKi Lassend and Valentina Gomez-Rincon turn to speak with BIF storyteller Alex Tapscott in the audience between storyteller segments.  Alex spoke on Day 2 about Blockchain technology which makes internet payment transactions more secure and more accessible to more people.

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Hope Life Skills students Valentina Gomez-Rincon (left side of photo in the white blouse), Alyssa Korol-Korolovskiy (next to Valentina), Gisabel Salcedo (next to Alyssa) and Fernando Perez speak with Ali DeCesare ( back to the camera;  Ali is a Junior at East Greenwich High School).   They all met during the mid-morning break on Day 2 of the conference.

I was so impressed with the Hope students.   The feedback I received from other attendees about the Hope students made me proud to be associated with them and Hope High.  Comments like ‘they acted so professionally.  They all greeted me with a good handshake, great eye contact and a genuine smile.  They even offered me their business card and asked for mine!   Amazing. 

Hope High always has amazing students representing the school at BIF.’

They really are impressive young people” said Life Skills teacher Stephen Cronin.

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Artist in the balcony seating drawing caricatures of the storytellers during their presentations .

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Brown University Freshman, Sophie Houser, talks about her shyness and introvertedness as a junior in high school before attending a computer programming camp called ‘Girls Who Code’. The camp gave her the confidence to step out of her comfort zone to do things she never thought possible.

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Chris Emdin is a professor at Columbia University who spoke about using ‘rap music’ to help students reach their potential. “If students can rap, the can do science”!!!

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singer songwriter, Dani Shay, sharing her personal story and singing her music on the BIF stage.












One thought on “Class Field Trip: BIF 2015 – September 16 and September 17

  1. I’m so glad I had the opportunity to attend BIF this year. The speakers were not only unique but they all had remarkable stories making my experience extremely interesting and thought provoking. The best part of BIF was the opportunity to speak face to face with each storyteller during the breaks. I’ll never forget attending to this conference and hopefully I can attend again in the future.

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